Mediterranean Baby Spinach Salad

Mediterranean Baby Spinach Salad | Side Dish #recipe via @CookSmarts#Eatmoreveggies month is just about over, but that certainly doesn’t mean that we’ll be eating less veggies! No way. All of our awesome methods to help you eat more veggies, such as turning them into noodles with a spiralizer or making them into fritters, is just the start. From there, you are free to experiment with different veggies by using these new cooking techniques.

Last week, as part of our #eatmoreveggies series, we released our 50 Simple Salads infographic, which gives salad ideas for every season. So we thought it was only fitting to feature a salad for this week’s side dish recipe. You’ll see that with this recipe, it’s as simple as it can get.

Cook Smarts members absolutely love this salad recipe. That came as a surprise to us, but that’s just it, isn’t it? Sometimes it’s the pure simplicity of a dish that can make it stand out. By letting the fresh ingredients shine on their own with some help from a flavorful vinaigrette, a simple salad can easily steal the show. (That’s why this recipe is featured on the infographic. It’s just that good!)

Mediterranean Baby Spinach Salad | Side Dish #recipe via @CookSmartsWinter can be a bit dreary at times, which makes this salad a fantastic winter side dish. After all the thick stews and roasted root veggies, though comforting and delicious, you start to long for the taste of crisp and bright spring vegetables. That’s why many of our winter salads contain a lot of crunch. It definitely makes a salad brighter, don’t you think?

The crispness of raw baby carrots, tanginess of kalamata olives, sweetness of baby spinach, and saltiness of feta cheese increase the flavor of this salad. We like to make our favorite red wine vinaigrette to go with it, but try brightening up this salad even more with a citrus vinaigrette, like the one shown on our infographic.

With fresh flavors like these, any of your winter blues can be easily lifted with one big bite.

For more winter salads, print out this salad chart.

Serving Suggestions:

For More Smarts:

If you have leftover grains in your fridge, add them to your salad to bulk it up. We added leftover couscous in ours, but it will also taste great with quinoa or farro.

Prepping Smarts:

You’ll see how easy it is to make your own vinaigrettes at home once you watch this video. Say bye-bye to bottled dressings and hello to healthy eating!

Equipment Smarts:

A whisk is a great tool to help emulsify vinaigrettes.

Buy this Oxo Good Grips Whisk
For more kitchen and equipment and tool smarts, visit our ‘Essential Kitchen Cookware and Tools’

Mediterranean Baby Spinach Salad
Author: Jess Dang
Prep time:
Total time:
Serves: 4
Make your winter blues go away with this refreshingly crisp and bright spinach salad filled with baby carrots, kalamata olives, and feta cheese, and tossed with a simple red wine vinaigrette.
  • Ingredients
  • Red wine vinegar – 2 tbsp
  • Dijon mustard – 2 tsp
  • Maple syrup – 1 tsp
  • Oregano – 1/4 tsp
  • Cooking oil – 3 tbsp
  • Salt and pepper – to taste
  • Baby carrots – 2 oz, sliced
  • Kalamata olives – 1/3 cup, pitted and sliced (or choose your favorite olive variety)
  • Baby spinach – 4 oz
  • Feta – 4 tbsp, crumbled
  1. Make dressing – Whisk together red wine vinegar, mustard, maple syrup, and oregano with cooking oil. Season to taste with salt and pepper. (Can be done up to 5 days ahead)
  2. For salad | Carrots / Olives – Prep as directed. (Can be done up to 5 days ahead)
  1. Toss dressing with baby spinach, carrots, olives, and feta.
  2. Enjoy as a side salad alongside your entree!

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